For students

How the MBA Student Loan Application Process Works

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For students


Whether you’re applying for a loan for your MBA before you step onto campus, or doing it in the middle of the semester as you’re signing up for a two-week course abroad, CommonBond makes the process as easy as possible.


Step 1: The Application

The application takes minutes. We’ll ask for some basic information, like your date of birth, school, and state of residence. We will then determine (in seconds!) if you qualify to continue with the loan application. If you qualify, we’ll ask how much you want to borrow and for which dates you need the loan. If you don’t, you can try applying again with a cosigner. Once that’s done, we’ll complete a credit check.


We may need some documents from you, such as your passport or ID. However, in most cases, you will be able to select immediately from a list of available loan products.


Step 2: You Approve Your Loan & Terms

Once you’ve chosen a loan, you will be prompted to accept the approval disclosure and e-sign your promissory note and self-certification form. This is all we need from you before we can send out your loan request to your school’s financial aid office.


Step 3: Certification (Your School Approves the Loan)

When you take out a private student loan, your school needs to certify that you are indeed one of their students, and then decide how much money to approve. They will look to see if you have any federal loans or other assistance, such as scholarships, grants, etc. Your school will then approve your loan amount up to their stated cost of attendance (taking into account all of your other sources of funding).


The timing of certification all depends on your school and when you apply. It usually takes at least three business days for the financial aid office to receive your request and approve the loan amount, up to your cost of attendance. Each school, and each student’s application, is different. If you’re applying in May for the upcoming academic school year, your school may not start certifying these loan requests until June or July. You also may find that your loan is certified at a slightly different time than a classmate’s simply based on how your school is handling the requests.


Please reach out to the Care Team at if you have questions about your specific circumstances!


Step 4: Truth in Lending/Disclosure Agreement

Once the school completes the certification request, we’ll have a final disclosure agreement for you to view and sign digitally. It should arrive three to five days after your school completes certification. This is your legally binding paperwork confirming that you want this loan.


Step 5: Disbursement

CommonBond disburses your loan funds directly to your school. Your school will apply these funds to your student account. If you have applied for a loan early (before classes start), expect those funds to be disbursed right around when the semester starts (at least by the first or second week of classes). If you apply in the middle of the semester, the disbursement date is generally as soon as possible, following a seven-day cancellation period that each borrower must be given by law. Upon disbursement, interest starts accruing on your new loan.


Again, if you have an upcoming tuition payment due, or we need to expedite the process for any reason, we’re happy to reach out to your school to move things along.


Step 6 (If Required): “Refund”

If you borrow more than the cost of tuition alone—such as when you borrow to cover the cost of living—you’ll be entitled to something called a refund. This means your school will directly apply your loan funds to your tuition cost but will “refund” you any amount of money you borrowed above that cost so you can, for instance, pay rent. Loan refund availability is dependent on the policy of your school and specific MBA program. Generally, you should be able to request your refund (whether via direct deposit or paper check) within two weeks following disbursement.


Have any questions? Leave a comment or get in touch at—we’d love to hear from you.


Click here to learn more about MBA loans and to begin your application.

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